Listen: President Trump, Congress, Michael Cohen discussed on PBS NewsHour
"Know whether the Newport about. Colin being told the lie by the president is true or not. We'll have to ask Mr. Cohen that. But it sure. So that explains why Michael Cohen wide earlier testimony talk many. He added the committee is arranging for Cohen to appear again next month. For the PBS NewsHour. I'm Lisa Desjardins. Let's hear now from Capitol Hill. Representative Jamie Raskin of Maryland is a member of the House Democratic leadership team Andy serves on the judiciary committee. He formerly was a professor of constitutional law. Congressman Raskin, thank you very much for joining us. You said earlier today that if this is true, it would be an impeachable offense. How so. Well, we know it's true. Because of course, the Republicans impeach Bill Clinton over telling one lie about. One sexual affair. And this is about organizing a whole pattern of lies in order to deceive the congress of the United States about a matter of national security in a matter that goes to the heart of American national sovereignty, so lying and obstruction of Justice have figured centrally in the impeachments that we've seen in modern times that is in the Nixon impeachment, and of course in the articles of impeachment brought against Clinton. So both in the articles that were brought against Nixon articles brought against Clinton obstruction of Justice in lying. We're central. So I think everybody views the president's involvement in lying to congress and suborning perjury as certainly a statutory felony violation under federal law, but also a major constitutional offense against the rule of law and our constitution. Suborning perjury meaning. Telling someone else to lie before the congress or before a jury. But congressman what is it exactly in this new information that you that you think makes it something that is an impeachable offense. What is it? Exactly. Well, let's start with this. We don't know whether or not this is true. All we have is one news report about what one witnesses said. No, obviously, it's a key witness in Michael Cohen was the president's personal lawyer. But what Cohen is saying is that the president urged him in council him and essentially conspired with him to lie before congress and suborning perjury that is urging and coaching someone to lie. In a sworn context is itself a federal criminal offence. It is a felony. But more importantly when you think about the whole context of it. Constitutionally it's a serious portrayal of the president's oath of office. The president is sworn to take care that the laws are faithfully executed. Not to take care that the laws are portrayed in violated. And this is just a rank the trail of the presidential oath. So so when you were asked about a similar question last month. I think after the report had come out that Michael Cohen said that the president had directed him to make payments to two women who allegedly had had affairs of the president at that point in December. You said that that you didn't think that that constituted? An argument for impeachment. You said it's a heavy. I'm just quoting you said, it's a very heavy constitutional remedy, but you're saying now, this is different. Well, you know, here's the thing. I thought that the Republicans completely overreached. When they impeach Bill Clinton for telling a lie about sex. It didn't go to the heart of the rule of law in the constitutional system. And so I don't think the president should be engaged in campaign finance violations and cover ups. I don't think he should be having money beyond the contribution limits channeled into the payoff of mistresses. I don't think he should be involved in making illegal corporate contributions, etc. Having said all of that that related to the suppression of news of fairs with right? The various mistresses, and I think they are that's a much closer question. I don't think. That the president should be involved in it. He wasn't president at the time. I think it's more arguable. But here you have a situation where the president is actually coaching and urging and suborning perjury. And I don't see how anybody democrat Republican independent green. Whatever could see that as anything other than their fence that goes right to the violation of the rule of law and a betrayal of his presidential oath. Just very quickly. We know there's a difference between saying something as an impeachable offense and saying. Proceedings should be undertaken to carry out impeachment being impeachment process. Is there any doubt in your mind that that process should go forward now? Well, I'm glad that you make that distinction Judy which a lot of people have not been making just because an offense is impeachable. Doesn't mean that you necessarily move to impeach because the impeachment remedy? Is very much part of the constitution. It should not be a fetish for us. But it should not be taboo, either we have to view it. As a tool within the tool kit. But we have to make a decision that is a mixed question of law and public policy. It's a question of law because we want to know whether or not he's violated basic legal obligations. Yes. But it's a question public policy too. Because we have a full public agenda that we're trying to get done in terms of prescription drug prices reform and so on very quickly. What about the White House argument? Congressman that Michael Cohen is just not to be believed. He is someone who has already lied to congress. Why should he be be believe now? Well, I think the president's lies are at over forty five hundred right now, certainly over four thousand so the White House would not be the first place that I would turn to in determining the veracity of another report, especially when it's about the president himself. But this is why we have courts, and this is why we have congress. And this is why. Why people swear under oath? And. For those who take the truth seriously. These are very serious allegations. And for those who take the rule of law seriously, these are very serious allegations. And we intend to pursue them with the full investigative apparatus of the congress of the United States. Representative Jamie Raskin, Maryland, thank you. Thank you for having me, Judy. There was new movement today in the Trump administration's plant push for a nuclear-free North Korea. The White House said that new talks between the president and Kim Jong on will take place toward the end of next month. As Nick Schifrin reports this comes after negotiations stalled following the last summit. Today's announcement came after North Korean chief negotiator, Kim Young troll met with secretary of state, Mike Pompeo and US special envoy for North Korea. Steve beacon, and they went to the White House to meet President Trump. That's where press secretary Sarah Sanders spoke about the US policy of combined diplomacy and maximum pressure of the United States is going to continue to."